Horse Project

Young girl on horse

What is it All About?

Love horses? Want to learn more? In this project, you will have the opportunity to take your love of horses to the next level—the 4-H level. You will find interesting and exciting activities in this project like:

  • Groundwork
  • Understanding horse behavior
  • Breed identification
  • Safety on and around horses
  • Tack
  • Riding skills
  • Trail riding
  • Health Care
  • Planning/budgeting for owning a horse

Later, show off your knowledge of horses by taking part in Hippology (study of horses) and Horse Quiz Bowl.

Grow in Your Project


  • Understand what your horse is telling you.
  • Demonstrate how to use grooming tools.
  • Use safe practices around horses.
  • Learn how to keep your horse healthy and well fed.


  • Learn tooth identification and care.
  • Learn about proper nutrition for your horse.
  • Become familiar with English & Western equipment.
  • Learn proper riding skills in the arena and on trails.
  • Demonstrate how groundwork ties into riding.


  • Learn to establish your horse’s health baselines.
  • Execute patterns on the ground and in the saddle.
  • Learn leadership skills and debate about horse related
  • Mentor a youth in the Horse Project.
  • Demonstrate leadership skills.

Click Here for Horse Project Member Resources

Resources for All Levels

WI 4-H Horse Association Handbook (from Wisconsin 4-H Horse Board)—Information on State 4-H Horse Shows, rules, and Association contact information.

eXtension Horse page—Articles, videos, podcasts, infographics, and online courses  are available.

Click Here for Horse Project Leader Resources

Exploring Essential Elements in the Horse Project


  • Find out who else is in the Horse Project. Get to know them.
  • Invite other members of your club to join the project with you.


  • Set project goals that challenge you to learn and try new things.
  • Research your favorite part of the horse industry.


  • Help plan a horse show or activity
    to support the horse project.
  • Share horse photos or project achievements with senior citizens and/or preschoolers.


  • Mentor younger members in the Horse Project.
  • Give a short presentation about your project to younger youth.

Applying Horse Project Skills to Your Life


  • Learn to win and lose gracefully. It is part of a healthy mindset.
  • Learn about foods that are for both humans and horses.


  • Learn how to balance a ration.
  • Build a model paddock or barn for your horse.


  • Volunteer at a horse rescue and/or therapeutic riding program.
  • Create a model horse display to show at a public location.


  • Offer your club a project demonstration on grooming, saddling, nutrition, etc.
  • Lead a “horseless horse” workshop for interested youth.

Showing What You Learned

  • Make a poster about horse breeds, parts of a horse, or the horse reproductive system.
  • Make a poster showing the parts of English or Western saddles.
  • Create a display of forages used to feed horses.
  • Demonstrate proper handling during groundwork.
  • Make a chart to show the expenses of owning a horse.
  • Make a display explaining body condition scores of horses.
  • Create a photo collage of your horse.
  • Demonstrate proper hoof care.
  • Research careers in the horse industry. Make a poster.
  • Research the history of horses. Make a poster showing the physical changes over time.
  • Create an exercise or feeding log for your horse. Explain why it is important.

Pathways Beyond 4-H

Many careers and college programs have connections to the horse industry. The Horse Project will help you explore your interests while gaining valuable knowledge.

Careers to consider:

  • Veterinarian
  • Horse Trainer
  • Horse Chiropractor
  • Veterinary Technician
  • Nutritionist
  • Medical Technology Specialist
  • Photographer

You may also gain these personal

  • Problem solving
  • Decision making
  • Public speaking
  • Teamwork
  • Sportsmanship

Caution Corner

Some of the project policies to be aware of include (please see the link below for the complete listing of 4-H, animal science, and horse policies):

  • Youth must be in 3rd grade or higher to participate.
  • No stallions are allowed.
  • No bareback or riding double.
  • Safety Equipment Institute (SEI) approved helmets, with harness fastened, must be worn at all times when mounted or driving.
  • Closed toe shoes or boots are required when near a horse.
  • Clothing appropriate for the activity is required. It protects participants from the elements around the event.
  • Boots with a cut-out heel must be worn when mounted.

Recording What You Learned

  • What went well?
  • If you could change something, what would it be? Why?
  • What can you do to encourage younger members to get involved?
  • What was the most challenging part of the project?

For more  information, on 4-H policies and procedures, please visit:

For more information on State 4-H Horse Association rules, guidelines, and activties view the Wisconsin 4-H Horse Association Handbook—

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